My Initial thoughts using a XS coming from a SE
I have been using a 5s since 2014 and the SE for a year now. I thought this might be helpful to someone in a similar position coming from a older device.
I’ll start with the good points and make some comparisons along the way.
The Display – The OLED screen is really nice and is huge compared to the 640p on the SE. However, does not seem as big of a jump to when the iPhone 4 launched the first Retina display. The blacks are true black and the colors are more accurate due to the better standards introduced in the 7.
My brightness indoors is about 30% and like 15% in the dark. I do not see this black smearing that people seem to describe in Apollo pure black mode when scrolling with text.
I was not worried about the notch beforehand, but for some apps I use, it really just wastes space. Not because they’re not optimized, but it just “there”. It might take some more time than I thought.
3D Touch – I really think this is my favorite feature thus far. I really think apple screwed up not finding a way to put this in the XR. Yes, I know there is haptic touch, but that would not work in my use. The app shortcuts and peek/pop really speed up use of the phone. I love it for peeking at links without opening it and having to swipe back.
I know some people don’t care and a majority of people I know don’t even know about it. I end up showing them features I don’t even have on my own device.
Camera – Obviously, it’s better. It should be after 3 years. I need a bit more time to test this, but here my take anyway. It’s better in lowlight with a much bigger sensor size than the SE by far. It has OIS, always on HDR, portrait mode and more I’m probably missing.
Hardware – The Taptic Engine feels so good and it doesn’t make a huge noise when on a table or in your pocket. It has real weight to it and make the SE feel like a featherweight.
Face ID – I have mixed feelings on this. On one hand, it works better than I thought in certain situations, but worse in others. It learned my cold weather hat and hood after one passcode entry and works in bed with my head in the pillow with all the attention features on. But, it also fails more as I suspect the phone is moving too fast from my pocket to my face to get a scan.
I feel like I have to slow down sometimes to unlock it. Another interesting thing I found is when you check the time. I use to pull the phone to check the time and put it back without pushing anything.
Now, with Face ID it ends up scanning and prevents it from locking when the phone gets tilted back down. Guess they want you to buy a watch. Kinda funny more than anything.
Conclusion – I don’t know if I’m going to keep it or switch to a 8 perhaps. I was really waiting for a radical redesign to switch and the X phones were that. It seems like the features I really enjoy could be had on the 8 for nearly half the price.
The XR is completely out of the question and I have seen it in person. My reasons were it was too big for one-handed use, no 3D Touch, single camera, and I think it really should have have been $50 cheaper. Again, my opinion.
I hope maybe this was helpful for someone and I might update this later when I have more time with it. Feel free to ask any questions.